Monthly archives: June, 2015

To snap or not to snap….

We spent the day in Saint Louis. Very interesting lecture in the morning about Mouride transmigration, and interactions and intersections in Senegal and abroad, particularly the US (although Canada came in for a mention too!). In the course of the conversation, finally confronted race head-on. One of the faculty members on the trip is African …

Ile Goree – slaves and trinkets

Amazingly, still have wifi and a few minutes before we get started, so will write briefly about Ile Goree, an island which was one of the (perhaps _the_) major slave departure point from West Africa. Today it is, quite jarringly, this delightful and pretty island, on which 1800 or so people actually live, marred only …

So much to learn!

The lectures — and conversations that have ensued — have helped to add some nuance and complexity to what we are seeing and doing on this trip. Bakary Sambe, who recently wrote a book on the Boko Haram, is one of the co-leaders, and he presented our first lecture, which gave us some insights into …

The Mourides of Touba

Spent yesterday afternoon at a Mouride school in Touba, a Mouride city in Senegal. Lots of interesting driving to get to and from there. More on that later. Touba is a city established by the Mouride brotherhood. Their founder, Cheikh Amadou Bamba, is buried there. The Mourides are a fascinating group generally, and our afternoon …

Never too old for hip hop

Just came back from Festa2h “Urban Women Day”. Festa2h is the “Festival international de Hip Hop & de cultures urbaines, and Urban Woman Day is an evening of women doing hip hop. Our day was pretty long and exhausting, and so wasn’t entirely sure I would make it, but one of the others in my …

Getting Here, Being here

The adventure has really begun now.  Even from the airport gate, it was a different experience than I’d had before.  Almost everyone at the very full gate appeared to be Senegalese: black, and also dressed in not typical American clothing. Women in flowered dresses with headscarves or bandanas. Men wearing long embroidered shirts.  Even some …

Back on the Road!

Getting ready to leave for Senegal later today.  9:30pm flight direct from JFK to Dakar.  Haven’t had as much time as I might have liked over the past month to think about this adventure, but I expect that I’ll have time in the airport.  I’m surprising myself by how nervous I am feeling right now.  …

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